Producers who want to minimize seed impact damage for certain grains might want to look at using a conveyor belt to move their grain from the bin to the truck.
Bob Schafer of Batco Manufacturing in the Canadian city of Saskatchewan, Alberta, said Batco conveyor belts are purchased by producers or seed companies looking for a way to keep the seed in pristine condition.
“Since specialty crops, seed and some commodities are very susceptible to impact damage caused by conventional grain-handling systems, Batco belt conveyors are ideal when gentle handing of the product is needed,” Schafer said.
In addition, Schafer said the seed is more likely to be able to germinate because it remains in good condition.
“An auger can spiral, twist and turn the seed as it moves up the tube, and that can crack the seed,” Schafer said. “With a conveyor belt, the seed rides on a belt, and you don’t have dockage because of cracked seed.”
The Batco conveyor belt moves the seed quickly from the bin to the truck and is easy to clean because it is a belt, not a tube, Schafer said.
The kinds of seed that need a conveyor belt include pulse crops, corn, edible beans and seed plant applications, he added.
Daniel Weinand, who farms in central North Dakota, showed how the Batco 1835 conveyor belt worked. He attached the system to one of his grain bins, and the seed moved quickly out of the bin up the belt and into the semi.
“We really like the conveyor belt. It is fast and works really well,” Weinand said, adding his operation uses it only for moving loads of grain out of the bin. “I can load a semi in 10 minutes,” he said.
His farm also grows peas, and he wanted a belt to move the corn and peas out of the bins without damaging the seed.
In addition, Weinand said he found the belt to be easy to clean. “There’s no place for anything to hide,” he added.
Schafer said the goal at Batco is to “provide grain-handling alternatives to conventional systems with a focus on gentle handling at a high capacity with low maintenance.”